TRANSPORT for Greater Manchester is trialling two ‘implied zebra crossings’, one of which is located on Peel Street, Denton, as part of a Government pilot scheme.
Though they do not meet Department for Transport standards, implied zebras are widely used in many European countries as a quick and simple way to make crossing the road in local communities safer.
Typically painted on street corners, they are designed to reinforce the implication that pedestrians have right of way if they are in the highway and thus encourages drivers to slow down.
Walking organisations have been putting pressure on the Government for years to green light implied zebras, and they are now being considered as part of the national walking and cycling strategy, ‘Gear Change’.
Chris Boardman, cycling and walking commissioner for Greater Manchester, said: “These crossings enforce a right that everybody has forgotten about.
“The law is that when you put a foot on the carriageway, you have the right of way.
“But people don’t do it, because there is no point being in the right while at the same time being in hospital after getting run over. I would like to see thousands of zebra crossings in [Greater] Manchester.”
Andrew Gwynne, MP for Denton and Reddish said: “This is a Government pilot to see whether informal zebra crossings can be placed on roads at the points people want to cross, and to see how they are observed by pedestrian and car driver alike.
“At the moment, the Department for Transport doesn’t permit non-standard markings on British roads, but implied zebras are already used successfully on roads on the continent and, here in the UK, in supermarket car parks.
“Once the assessment has been made of this crossing, and others around Greater Manchester, the Government will decide whether the rules will be changed to make them a permanent feature of the British street scene.”